The Securities Commission Malaysia (SC, Suruhanjaya Sekuriti) ordered Huobi Global to immediately cease all operations in Malaysia. The platform is said to be running an illegal digital asset exchange (DAX) in Malaysia without proper registration.
Malaysian watchdog takes action against Huobi and CEO Leon Li
According to the official media release shared by the Securities Commission Malaysia today, May, 22, 2023, cryptocurrency exchange Huobi Global becomes a target of law enforcement action.
🔒 SC has issued a public reprimand against Huobi Global Limited to cease operations in Malaysia, disable website and mobile app on platforms like Apple Store and Google Play.— SC Malaysia (@SecComMalaysia) May 22, 2023
📰 Read the full release here: https://t.co/UY4dVGAHRh pic.twitter.com/Fe6xSqftZr
A public reprimand is issued against both the platform itself and its CEO Leon Li. Huobi Global is urged to stop operating in Malaysia in any form: it should disable website and mobile applications and stop spreading advertising content of all types that targets Malaysian investors.
The regulator stressed that it is concerned by Huobi's compliance with local regulatory requirements and protecting investors' interests:
The SC views this breach seriously, as operating a DAX without obtaining the SC’s registration as a Recognised Market Operator (RMO) is an offence under Section 7(1) of the Capital Markets and Services Act 2007.
All Malaysian citizens who used Huobi Global for trading should immediately stop working with the platform, withdraw funds and deactivate accounts, the Malaysian SC says.
Huobi CEO Leon Li is responsible for implementing the directives issued by Malaysian SC. So far, the official account of Huobi Global is keeping silence about the situation.
Crypto services face increased regulatory scrutiny
According to the data of CoinGecko aggregator, Huobi is the third largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world with over $366 million in daily trading volume. Huobi started operating in Malaysia in November 2020.
Malaysian regulators usually take all potential violations very seriously: in 2022, they destroyed 1,773 Bitcoin ASIC miners operated by users accused of stealing electricity. In addition, it officially refused to accept Bitcoin (BTC) as legal tender.
As covered by U.Today previously, the global cryptocurrency community opposes regulatory attacks. Earlier this month, the Polygon (MATIC) team asked EU regulators to except DeFi projects from the regulatory frameworks for VASPs.